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Popular Science weighs in on the concept of a virgin birth

File:Meister von Hohenfurth 002.jpg

Master of Vyšší Brod/c. 1350

In “Could A Virgin Birth Ever Happen?”:

Virgin birth, known to scientists as parthenogenesis, appears to be rather common in the animal kingdom. Many insects and other invertebrates are capable of switching between sexual and clonal reproduction. Among the vertebrates, virgin births have been documented in at least 80 taxonomic groups, including fish, amphibians, and reptiles. But humans and our fellow mammals provide a notable exception. So far as anyone can say—and there are a few gaps in the data, notably the platypus—no mammalian species is capable of giving birth without a father.

A painting of the Madonna and Child accompanies the piece (not the one at left).

Items of this type usefully illustrate naturalism in science, as it filters into public consciousness.

Accounts in the New Testament insist that the birth of the Christ Child was explicitly not a natural event. See Matthew and Luke. So just about anything Popular Science has to say on the topic is irrelevant. But they feel the need to say something anyway.

Note: Popular Science hit our screens earlier this year when it dispensed with reader comments. Apparently, their reader are not literate enough for their publication.

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4 Responses to Popular Science weighs in on the concept of a virgin birth

  1. Great quote from the article:
    “Scientists estimate that imprinting affects about 200 different genes. For parthenogenesis to occur, many of these changes would have to occur through random mutation. “I just think it’s too complex and you’d need too many things to happen accidentally,” says Marisa Bartolomei, a molecular geneticist at the University of Pennsylvania”

  2. Reproduction without a male is known as parthenogenesis [Greek, parthenos meaning “maiden” plus “genesis”]. Recently scientists have been experimenting successfully with parthenogenesis in mammals. The Economist of August 1, 1981, reports: “Embryo development in the absence of sperm is the natural means of reproduction in many lower species of animal. . . . Parthenogenesis is being studied using laboratory mice. Several means exist for artificially activating an unfertilised mouse egg.”

    Similarly, Dr. M. B. V. Roberts of Marlborough College, England, writes: “An unfertilized egg was removed from a female rabbit, activated by pricking, and then popped back into the uterus. Hormone treatment had been previously given to the female so that her uterine mucosa was prepared for implantation. Normal development ensued, and a visibly normal offspring was produced.”

    Are we to conclude from this that God induced Mary’s pregnancy in some such way from an unfertilized egg? No. If Mary’s firstborn had received both chromosomes (X) from her, the offspring would of necessity have been female.

    Hence, something more must have been involved in the conception of Jesus. Just what this was the angel explained to Joseph: “That which has been begotten in her is by holy spirit.” (Matthew 1:20) We do not know precisely how this was done. Yet we must admit that if mere man can in a limited way manipulate the fertilization process in the laboratory, surely it is not beyond the power of the Creator and Life-Giver of the universe to do so and to transfer the life-force of his Son from the heavens to the ovum of a virgin girl.

  3. Accounts in the New Testament insist that the birth of the Christ Child was explicitly not a natural event. See Matthew and Luke. So just about anything Popular Science has to say on the topic is irrelevant. But they feel the need to say something anyway.

    Exactly! They redefine the meaning of the virgin birth which is another attempt to discredit the Bible.

    At least they could deal with the meaning the Bible attributes to the virgin birth.

    Their article is totally meaningless because what they are writing about has nothing to do with what Christians believe.

    Yet, like the author said, still they can’t refrain from commenting!

    It just shows their bias!

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